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  • Writer's pictureIan Ferguson

Mind your Language !

What NOT to say to someone who sadly has a mental illness Pull yourself together ! If they could they would! Clearly in saying this you have no understanding or empathy with those who suffer from mental health issue and you have just added to their illness Snap out of it! So you want me to ignore what I am going through? Again you are completely lacking in understanding and empathy- but I see a pattern emerging ! There are people a lot worse off than you True ! Thank you for comparing my situation with that of someone else- Now I feel even more guilty! We all get down at times- I wasn’t feeling great myself last week! Please understand that mental illness is not a phase and it is not about ‘feeling’ The chemistry in the brain is out of balance. And I wish it was not the case You need to pray more ! Sadly their illness makes them feel as though God is far from them. They try to pray but how much ‘more’ is ‘more’? Can God not simply hear the cry of a broken person? Claim your healing ! Really? Jesus never asked anyone to do that ! You won’t find anything like that coming from his lips. You will not find such a thing taught in the New Testament either. So just remind me where you got that idea because I cant find it anywhere in the Bible You’re not healed because you lack faith Right, so that is really helpful! You must have a PHD in pastoral care. If you really want to help those who suffer from a mental health issue then try this. 1. Refuse to give people your advice unless you have walked in their shoes. 2. Do not use judgmental words or have judgmental attitudes- you are NOT God so you don’t know what that person is going through. 3. They are not ‘possessed’ by a demon- mental illness is no more a work of the devil than a broken rib or cancer- 4. Be there for them , words are not needed most of the time. 5. Pray for them and ask God to help them and heal them. I have faced the above responses directly and indirectly. Many with mental health issues have faced these same hurtful comments and opinions. Listen, you're not on your own here. But be assured that there are people out there who do understand. There are people out there who have been where you are. So stay strong, keep talking and walk with us. Yes, here is a place where you can be yourself. Where no one is going to judge you. A place where you can connect to people who know, who understand and who are walking the walk and talking the talk.

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